The Simple Economics of Open Source

phil hunt philh at
Sun Apr 30 22:12:04 CEST 2000

On Mon, 24 Apr 2000 03:29:29 -0600, 
Andrew Dalke <dalke at> wrote:
>Raffael Cavallaro wrote:
>>Fact is, only commodity items, that are known to many programmers, are
>>open sourced. If there were sufficient demand to support a closed source
>>business, then it would have happened that way. The proof of this is the
>>BSDs, which would allow a closed source, proprietary fork at any time.
>>Hasn't happened 'cause there's no demand for such a product.
>Not quite fact.  There are counter-examples.  What's the major
>competitor to TeX?  From my understanding, when it was first released
>there was nothing like it, proprietary or otherwise, so it wasn't
>a commodity.
>The first few web servers and browsers weren't commodities, but they
>were open source.
>But I do agree that most open-source projects seem to be years behind
>their closed-source equivalents.

How much more advanced is the closed-source equivalent of Leafwa?

***** Phil Hunt ***** send email to phil at *****
Moore's Law: hardware speed doubles every 18 months
Gates' Law: software speed halves every 18 months 

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